A brief history of the most harrowing discontinued Barbies ever made

Yep, boob growing Barbie from the film is real

When you’re a big company like Mattel with a famous property like Barbie on your hands, not every release you experiment with can be as big a hit as the blonde bombshell doll who made the Barbie name famous. There have been plenty of bizarre Barbies left by the wayside in the years since the doll debuted – and there are plenty of nods and cameos to them of course in Barbie, the Greta Gerwig movie breaking records and making pop culture waves everywhere. With that in mind, here’s a rundown of some of the more bizarre discontinued Barbies that time forgot.

Sugar Daddy Ken

Via Mattel

Take a wild guess on the year Palm Beach Sugar Daddy Ken released? I hear your estimations of the 70s, maybe the early 90s at a stretch. This doll came out in 2009. TWO THOUSAND AND NINE. Just in time for RuPaul’s Drag Race to debut – which makes me laugh because you cannot tell me that’s not Carson Kressley in doll form.

Growing Up Skipper

Via Mattel

Skipper was introduced to be Barbie’s little sister, but it took a weird turn when Mattel released ‘Growing Up Skipper’, a doll they claimed was ‘two in one’ because when you pushed her arm up she got taller and grew some breasts. Who signed off on this may I ask???

Via Amazon

Teen Talk Barbie got discontinued because despite the idea of a talking doll being quite nice, the stuff she said was considered to be reinforcing harmful stereotypes. Aka, she’d say ‘Let’s plan our dream wedding’, ‘Will I ever have enough clothes?’ and ‘Math class is tough’. She’s so real for that last one.

Tanner the Dog

Via Mattel

Of all the discontinued Barbies, it’s Tanner the Dog we need justice for. The poor cute lab who had his film debut thanks to Greta Gerwig got discontinued due to health and safety concerns over his little poop pellets.

Video Girl Barbie

Discontinued barbies

Via Mattel

The FBI were concerned because she had a camera in her. They were concerned it could be used to make child pornography. Blurgh.


discontinued Barbies

Via Mattel

Famously played by Emerald Fennell in the film, Midge is a pregnant doll that has a belly you can pull off and see the baby inside. Justice for Midge too tbh.

Earring Magic Ken

discontinued Barbies

Via Mattel

Okay not a harrowing one when it comes to discontinued Barbies, but the fact they made a gay Ken is so slay. Bring him back I say!

Barbie is showing in cinemas everywhere now. 


More Barbie stories recommended by this writer:

• Take this quiz and we’ll tell you which Barbie from the film matches your overall vibe

• I survived Barbenheimer: The most chaotic cinema day of a generation

• The reviews are in for Barbie and yikes, some of them are fully savage